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§123.35 As the NPDES Permitting Authority for regulated small MS4s, what is my role?
(a) You must comply with the requirements for all NPDES permitting authorities under Parts 122, 123, 124, and 125 of this chapter. (This section is meant only to supplement those requirements and discuss specific issues related to the small MS4 storm water program.)
(b) You must develop a process, as well as criteria, to designate small MS4s other than those described in §122.32(a)(1) of this chapter, as regulated small MS4s to be covered under the NPDES storm water discharge control program. This process must include the authority to designate a small MS4 waived under paragraph (d) of this section if circumstances change. EPA may make designations under this section if a State or Tribe fails to comply with the requirements listed in this paragraph. In making designations of small MS4s, you must:
(1)(i) Develop criteria to evaluate whether a storm water discharge results in or has the potential to result in exceedances of water quality standards, including impairment of designated uses, or other significant water quality impacts, including habitat and biological impacts.
(ii) Guidance: For determining other significant water quality impacts, EPA recommends a balanced consideration of the following designation criteria on a watershed or other local basis: discharge to sensitive waters, high growth or growth potential, high population density, contiguity to an urbanized area, significant contributor of pollutants to waters of the United States, and ineffective protection of water quality by other programs;
(2) Apply such criteria, at a minimum, to any small MS4 located outside of an urbanized area serving a jurisdiction with a population density of at least 1,000 people per square mile and a population of at least 10,000;
(3) Designate any small MS4 that meets your criteria by December 9, 2002. You may wait until December 8, 2004 to apply the designation criteria on a watershed basis if you have developed a comprehensive watershed plan. You may apply these criteria to make additional designations at any time, as appropriate; and
(4) Designate any small MS4 that contributes substantially to the pollutant loadings of a physically interconnected municipal separate storm sewer that is regulated by the NPDES storm water program.
(c) You must make a final determination within 180 days from receipt of a petition under §122.26(f) of this chapter (or analogous State or Tribal law). If you do not do so within that time period, EPA may make a determination on the petition.
(d) You must issue permits consistent with §§122.32 through 122.35 of this chapter to all regulated small MS4s. You may waive or phase in the requirements otherwise applicable to regulated small MS4s, as defined in §122.32(a)(1) of this chapter, under the following circumstances:
(1) You may waive permit coverage for each small MS4s in jurisdictions with a population under 1,000 within the urbanized area where all of the following criteria have been met:
(i) Its discharges are not contributing substantially to the pollutant loadings of a physically interconnected regulated MS4 (see paragraph (b)(4) of this section); and
(ii) If the small MS4 discharges any pollutant(s) that have been identified as a cause of impairment of any water body to which it discharges, storm water controls are not needed based on wasteload allocations that are part of an EPA approved or established “total maximum daily load” (TMDL) that address the pollutant(s) of concern.
(2) You may waive permit coverage for each small MS4 in jurisdictions with a population under 10,000 where all of the following criteria have been met:
(i) You have evaluated all waters of the U.S., including small streams, tributaries, lakes, and ponds, that receive a discharge from the MS4 eligible for such a waiver.
(ii) For all such waters, you have determined that storm water controls are not needed based on wasteload allocations that are part of an EPA approved or established TMDL that addresses the pollutant(s) of concern or, if a TMDL has not been developed or approved, an equivalent analysis that determines sources and allocations for the pollutant(s) of concern.
(iii) For the purpose of paragraph (d)(2)(ii) of this section, the pollutant(s) of concern include biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), sediment or a parameter that addresses sediment (such as total suspended solids, turbidity or siltation), pathogens, oil and grease, and any pollutant that has been identified as a cause of impairment of any water body that will receive a discharge from the MS4.
(iv) You have determined that current and future discharges from the MS4 do not have the potential to result in exceedances of water quality standards, including impairment of designated uses, or other significant water quality impacts, including habitat and biological impacts.
(v) Guidance: To help determine other significant water quality impacts, EPA recommends a balanced consideration of the following criteria on a watershed or other local basis: discharge to sensitive waters, high growth or growth potential, high population or commercial density, significant contributor of pollutants to waters of the United States, and ineffective protection of water quality by other programs.
(3) You may phase in permit coverage for small MS4s serving jurisdictions with a population under 10,000 on a schedule consistent with a State watershed permitting approach. Under this approach, you must develop and implement a schedule to phase in permit coverage for approximately 20 percent annually of all small MS4s that qualify for such phased-in coverage. Under this option, all regulated small MS4s are required to have coverage under an NPDES permit by no later than March 8, 2007. Your schedule for phasing in permit coverage for small MS4s must be approved by the Regional Administrator no later than December 10, 2001.
(4) If you choose to phase in permit coverage for small MS4s in jurisdictions with a population under 10,000, in accordance with paragraph (d)(3) of this section, you may also provide waivers in accordance with paragraphs (d)(1) and (d)(2) of this section pursuant to your approved schedule.
(5) If you do not have an approved schedule for phasing in permit coverage, you must make a determination whether to issue an NPDES permit or allow a waiver in accordance with paragraph (d)(1) or (d)(2) of this section, for each eligible MS4 by December 9, 2002.
(6) You must periodically review any waivers granted in accordance with paragraph (d)(2) of this section to determine whether any of the information required for granting the waiver has changed. At a minimum, you must conduct such a review once every five years. In addition, you must consider any petition to review any waiver when the petitioner provides evidence that the information required for granting the waiver has substantially changed.
(e) You must specify a time period of up to 5 years from the date of permit issuance for operators of regulated small MS4s to fully develop and implement their storm water program.
(f) You must include the requirements in §§122.33 through 122.35 of this chapter in any permit issued for regulated small MS4s or develop permit limits based on a permit application submitted by a regulated small MS4. (You may include conditions in a regulated small MS4 NPDES permit that direct the MS4 to follow an existing qualifying local program's requirements, as a way of complying with some or all of the requirements in §122.34(b) of this chapter. See §122.34(c) of this chapter. Qualifying local, State or Tribal program requirements must impose, at a minimum, the relevant requirements of §122.34(b) of this chapter.)
(g) If you issue a general permit to authorize storm water discharges from small MS4s, you must make available a menu of BMPs to assist regulated small MS4s in the design and implementation of municipal storm water management programs to implement the minimum measures specified in §122.34(b) of this chapter. EPA plans to develop a menu of BMPs that will apply in each State or Tribe that has not developed its own menu. Regardless of whether a menu of BMPs has been developed by EPA, EPA encourages State and Tribal permitting authorities to develop a menu of BMPs that is appropriate for local conditions. EPA also intends to provide guidance on developing BMPs and measurable goals and modify, update, and supplement such guidance based on the assessments of the NPDES MS4 storm water program and research to be conducted over the next thirteen years.
(h)(1) You must incorporate any additional measures necessary to ensure effective implementation of your State or Tribal storm water program for regulated small MS4s.
(2) Guidance: EPA recommends consideration of the following:
(i) You are encouraged to use a general permit for regulated small MS4s;
(ii) To the extent that your State or Tribe administers a dedicated funding source, you should play an active role in providing financial assistance to operators of regulated small MS4s;
(iii) You should support local programs by providing technical and programmatic assistance, conducting research projects, performing watershed monitoring, and providing adequate legal authority at the local level;
(iv) You are encouraged to coordinate and utilize the data collected under several programs including water quality management programs, TMDL programs, and water quality monitoring programs;
(v) Where appropriate, you may recognize existing responsibilities among governmental entities for the control measures in an NPDES small MS4 permit (see §122.35(b) of this chapter); and
(vi) You are encouraged to provide a brief (e.g., two page) reporting format to facilitate compiling and analyzing data from submitted reports under §122.34(g)(3) of this chapter. EPA intends to develop a model form for this purpose.
[64 FR 68850, Dec. 8, 1999]